Class halls – why?

Stopping in to my class hall on my main over the weekend, I realized that I rarely send followers on missions any more. Why? Mainly because the majority of rewards seem worthless to me. Just not worth the effort or the class hall resources — even though I am approaching 50k of those.

I still usually do the AP missions, but only if I can configure a team that will net me at least 75% bonus chance, because the bonus token is the one I want, not the paltry 30-40k main reward. Approaching 3 million AP cost per trait increase, it just doesn’t seem cost effective to take hours or days to gather 30,000 AP.

Once in a while, out of boredom, I will do the gold reward missions, but again only if I can get a very high percentage bonus chance, because although the 1500 gold bonus is decent, the baseline 400-700 gold is frankly not worth the effort these days. Too many other ways to earn gold in a lot less time. Heck, I can earn close to 400 gold just vendoring gray items and green gear from a bunch of daily world quests.

Dungeon and raid “special” missions? I have never gotten anything worth while from the chests awarded for completion. All these missions do, at least in my opinion, is clutter up my quest log. (And as a side note, Blizz, when are we going to get a larger quest log?)

Follower gear and tokens? Please. Some of them are of value early in the follower process, I grant you, but they are merely vendor trash once you have leveled your followers. I keep a few items in my bank just to outfit a team now and then for AP bonus missions, but otherwise — pfffft.

As a consequence of crappy rewards, my followers tend to sit around a lot. Except for Addie Fizzlebog. We go everywhere together, and though my hunter does not really need a bodyguard, I have managed to equip her with gear that nets me 150 garrison resources every time I complete a world quest. (In theory I should be able to get 200, but that other 100-resource token has been elusive for me.) 150 does not sound like a lot, but it seems to really add up — remember I am close to 50k resources and I do not usually do a ton of WQs every day. I should have enough to easily do the two new class hall improvement stages in 7.2. (Though why I want to do them may be another question, see below.)

(I will admit, though, sometimes I feel like smacking her if I have to hear her squeak one more time “I’m a real hunter now!”)

The fact that follower missions rapidly become fairly useless is to me emblematic of the whole concept of class/order halls in Legion. I just don’t see the point. Blizz seems to have gone out of their way to make sure we don’t spend a lot of time in them — no mailboxes, nothing that makes them places you want to hang out in, not even any particularly useful gear.

Recently there has been a spate of blue posts defending the class hall gear you can buy, but I think I have to side with the player complaints on this. It is true, I think, for most players, that by the time they have the level and rep and achievements necessary to buy a particular piece of gear, chances are excellent that they do not need it except possibly for transmog. I think the first piece I could buy on my hunter was useful, but after that not so much.

Arguably, some classes spend more time just getting to their class hall than they do actually transacting business there. Which brings up another point — what was cute and intriguing in terms of getting to a particular class hall in the beginning becomes tedious and annoying very quickly. This was brought home to me over the weekend when I spent some time leveling my rogue. I don’t really care that the rogue class hall is in the Dal sewers, but the whole requirement to run through Dal, into the shop, lay down your coin, have the secret door open, run down stairs and take a left, run down more stairs and take another left, then run through the sewer and across the bridge, then open another secret door — all just to get to your class hall — is, to put it mildly, FREAKING STUPID AND ANNOYING. I know some devs at Blizz think it is clever and fun, but honestly they must never have done it more than once or twice, because — no, just no.

Hey Blizz, how about doing something really nice for quality of life in Patch 7.2, and give everyone a class hall hearth like we had for garrisons, or if you don’t want to call it a hearth, call it an “instant portal” like a couple of classes have?

Class halls do have target dummies, but that brings up another ridiculous head-scratcher — why are there none in Dal? We are told the city is in hiding from the Legion, it will serve as the launch pad for the final assault, and it must be defended at all costs, yet there is no way for its defenders to train?  Honestly, between this and the ridiculous engineer-only auction house, Dal pretty much stinks as a hub city. I say let the Legion have it.

I am sticking by my theory that the only reason we have class halls in Legion is that Blizz originally planned to keep the WoD garrison idea for at least one more expansion, and it was too late to undo that plan by the time they figured out garrisons had a lot of unintended — and bad — consequences for game play, not to mention a lot of players voiced loud complaints over the whole idea. By the time it was clear that WoD’s garrisons had flopped,  Legion was already sketched out in some detail, and there was no good way to remove them with out trashing much of the rest of Legion’s design. So Blizz made a few passes at removing some of the things they perceived to be problems with them, and thus we got these relatively worthless class halls.

Blizz, for the love of all you hold holy, unless you intend to give us guild halls or player housing, please ditch the whole idea of garrisons or anything remotely similar in the next expansion. Though it might have looked good on paper, it turned out badly — cut your losses and move on. It is a complication that adds nothing to the game. And who knows, without it we might get another raid tier! 😉

About Fiannor
I have a day job but escape by playing WoW. I love playing a hunter, and my Lake Wobegonian goal is to become "above average" at it.

7 Responses to Class halls – why?

  1. Marathal says:

    Having seen a few of the other Class Halls I cannot complain about how boring and utilitarian the Priest Hall is. I am still trying to find the person for my wife’s Shaman to place her order for a token every week. Plenty of video from the beta with walk through’s, but no one seems to say, look for this person. As for the Troll Shadowpriest follower? I abandoned him long ago. I was fed up with the constant “Surrender to Madness” Yeah I get it Blizz, you think it was a cool talent. Now stop. Kthnx

    • Fiannor says:

      I agree that the layouts of some of the class halls are needlessly confusing. I am not sure why many of them are so large and sprawling — again for something that Blizz more or less goes out of its way to make sure we don’t want to spend a lot of time in. I still get lost in my druid class “hall”, and the warlock one? Forget it, I spend nearly all my time there running about looking for NPCs or other features. Sticking to my theory, I suppose the reason they are so large is that they were originally planned to be much more central to Legion game play than they are, but when Blizz scaled back their use, they did not wish to waste all the design resources and so did not scale back their size or layout.

      • Marathal says:

        I think you’re right. There was probably a team working on them at the beginning of WoD. And I saw mention our Broken Isle outpost is very similar to the Draenor ones. Let’s hope things go better.

  2. Grumsta says:

    The best way of dealing with Class Halls is via the mobile app, i.e. outside the game. Why not turn those otherwise useless OR into gold? The most useful aspect for me is the Rep tokens, which my main and Alliance alt now do so they can send them cross-server and cross-faction to my Horde alt to boost her rep up. Don’t have an alt now? Just stockpile them. Genuinely useful system.

    It’s rare that I run a mission with < 200% success chance.

    All three of my characters have a bodyguard to pick up gold and OR from WQs. As you say they do quickly mount up. I keep churning out follower gear until I have a decent token and then switch the slot over if it does anything useful.

    I agree with you about the Class Hall gear for characters. The chest and wrists were useful, but everything else I out-geared PDQ. Complete waste of time.

    I saw a screenshot on Twitter of the new bases we're going to be building on the Broken Shore. They look an awful lot like WoD Outposts to me. My hackles went straight up.

    • Fiannor says:

      Yes, I collect the rep tokens, too, have a decent stash of them stored with my banker until I decide which alts may need some particular rep for profession recipes, etc. (However, side mini-rant: why can’t the Kirin Tor emissary rewards be BoA also, I bank them on my main in the faint hope they will be useful in 7.2, but I do not hold out much hope.)

      I used the mobile app quite a bit when it first came out, but have not done so for a few weeks now. As you say, it is very handy, but I guess somewhere in the back of my brain is the gnawing little thought that it elevates the game to a constant presence in my life, and that is not where I want it to be. It is silly, I know, but there it is.

      Interesting about the Broken Shore bases. I have not seen the screenshot, but now I think I will go look it up. Of course, it makes sense to re-use as much art and computer code as you can in a game a vast as WoW, but thinking about it planted a small seed of thought.

      Stay with me here. Remember that Blizz told us unequivocally there would be no garrisons in Legion, they even told us at the beginning of WoD that the garrison concept was a one-expansion device, not to be continued. Then they gave us class halls, which for all practical purposes were just recycled garrisons, though admittedly less consuming than actual WoD garrisons. In Legion, Blizz has told us that artifact weapons are definitely limited to one expansion, the concept will absolutely not be a feature of future expansions …. I am starting to wonder if we will see some weapon leveling mechanism in 8.x that is suspiciously similar to artifact traits in Legion.

      You read it here first.

  3. demonnick001 says:

    I too have completely abandoned my class hall mission, I just couldn’t be bothered for the minuscule reward. I have to admit though that as a person who only plays two classes actively (hunter and paladin), I absolutely love the paladin hall and completely detest the hunter one. This is kind of synonymous with how I have felt about this expansion, and for me its all about the lore. Paladins have the most badass and well thought out lore I have seen put into this game. From acquiring Ashbringer, to visiting long gone paladin heroes, to establishing a garrison below the chapel that represents the power of paladins in vanilla….it all feels so epic and ties into the game seamlessly for me. The hunter garrison and artifact weapon lacks all of this for me, and so the move from “o this is cool” to “this thing stinks” was almost instant for my hunter, whereas with my paladin the hall felt so tied in to the story line that I still don’t see it as a chore to visit (or perhaps I just like the music better).

    I am curious to see what direction they move in for 7.2

    • Fiannor says:

      Spot-on comment! Early in the Legion alpha phase, I was troubled by the pretty clear observation that the whole artifact weapon and class hall lore seemed designed for one or two classes, but the rest just reeked of an attitude of “What the hell, now we gotta invent a bunch of lore so we can make up weapons for EVERY SPEC. Oh, yeah, and we gotta invent ‘historic places’ to stick a bunch of class halls.”

      I don’t play a paladin, but I completely agree that, from what I know of their story in Legion, it is nicely advanced and appropriately lore-based.